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LGO experts out there??(5 Posts)
Any LGO experts out there?
I have asked for a review of an initial refusal to rule against our LA for not putting DS's provision in place.
They ruled on delay rather than the fact that the council was not acting lawfully as I had pointed out - that is obviously an absolute duty whereas delay is subject to reasonableness.
They have said it was. I've got the file but there is no evidence of any explanation being given by the LA for the delay. The LGO officer just asks repeatedly 'have you got provision in place yet'? As soon as the LGO get sent a timetable, that is that.
However, annoyingly, this woman made really mean comments about me choosing to get involved in raising issues about provision and that was my own fault. I asked to transfer the case to someone else but her manager has refused.
I have now been given some more time to respond before a review.
Has anyone challenged lack of statementing provision on grounds of breach of the law rather than delay?
Did anyone get a solicitor to do this? I just feel you get ignored as a member of the public all the time.
If the provision in the Statement is not being provided then the remedy is to apply for a judicial review. SOSSEN has some information here: www.sossen.org.uk/reports/Judicial_Review.pdf
I'm not sure that the LGO is worth bothering with, TBH
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Yes, I've been right through the LGO. Found in my favour, LA censured, ordered to apologise and pay me £250 compensation.
I disagreed with the Ombudsman,s original decision in which, although acknowledging maladministration had ocurred, they preferred to try to close the case without any penalties.
I wrote stating that I considered they underestimated the distress etc caused by the LA's refusal to make adequate provision and asked for the Decision to be looked at again. My compalint was then reinvestigaed by another officer and the Decision was again in my favour with the apology, censure and compensation.
It probably only achieved a small black mark in teh performance tables for my LA that year but it did give me some satisfaction to be vindicated after everyone (including 3 Councillors) who handled my complaint to the Council before I elevated the complaint to the LGO had failed to uphold my complaint.
I also brought a case against the LA for educational negligence which son won. To be successful you not only have to prove not only that suitable provision was not made by the LA but that damage directly arose from that failure. That's the difficult bit - cause and effect and also measuring the effect of the damage. You would be hard pushed to be able quantify damage that arose from a short period of failure to provide suitable eduaction. We had to have an independant clinical and educational psychologist report and also be prepared to have independant psychiatric report lined up should it reach Court. There was also the expense of the barrister who was a specialist in educationa law. The LA's insurers settled out of court and picked up son's legal csots which were by that time in excess of £10K and would have been substantially higher had we gone to Court. The LGO decision was a useful piece of evidence to have during the negoiated settlement as it proved that the LA had been guilty of maladministration.
The entire process from start to end was just over 3 years with complaints and legal remedy running in parallel. I spent almost a year going through the 3 stage Council complaint procedure and alsomst as long waiting for and challenging the LGO Decision.
I would not wish the experience on my worst enemy. It was all-consuming and stressful.
Thanks. I think they are going to review and try the same tack - they are sort of admitting that actually there is maladministration but they will now look at remedy.
I've already had an apology but that didn't make the provision miraculously appear!
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